Letters to the Editor

Letters: Oct. 22, 2019

Slovic offers new perspective, ideas

I support Lillian “Randy” Slovic for Richland City Council Position 1. Randy’s goal is to provide high quality of life for all residents of Richland. Randy is very approachable and listens to people. During her campaign, she has heard residents want safer streets for walkers, bikers, students, and commuters; solutions for high traffic and excessive speeds in residential neighborhoods; and redevelopment of and investment in the “older” core of the city. Randy will strive to make Richland City Council business dealings and meetings more transparent and accountable. Richland is growing. Fresh eyes and a new perspective are valuable in addressing the challenges of growth in our community. Randy Slovic gets my vote to address those challenges.

Join me in electing Lillian “Randy” Slovic to Richland City Council Position 1.

Phyllis Baxter, Richland

I-976 would cut license tab fees

On the November ballot, an initiative to be voted on is I-976. This is being promoted as the “$30 car tabs” initiative by Tim Eyman, a man who supports state taxes being reduced. I-976 would change the cost for car tabs to be a $30 flat rate, no matter what kind of car you own.

Also, the initiative would change the sales tax for cars so that if you buy a $10,000 car, you would pay the sales tax for a $10,000 car, and not for a car of a higher value, as Eyman has stated is currently the case. Many people worry the decreased tax revenue would negatively impact the state transportation system.

However, Eyman has said that the state has a $3.5 billion tax surplus, enough to backfill any affected government program. With that being said, why not vote yes on I-976? I encourage you to vote YES on I-976 to decrease the taxes paid to the state government, which has more than enough tax revenue already.

Kaleb Fisler, Kennewick

Sundvik a special board candidate

I’m writing in support of Diane Sundvik for Kennewick School District’ Director Position 5. I’m sharing my enthusiasm for Diane because I feel candidates like her come along very rarely, and when they do, we owe it to our community to support them.

The first time I met Diane was in her office at Canyon View (Elementary). I was a first-time mom of a toddler with a speech delay. To say I was anxious on that day is an understatement. I had so many questions, concerns and fears. However, as soon as we sat down to talk, I knew we were in good hands. Did we instantly know what the future held for my son at that moment? No. But within minutes of sitting with Diane and carefully going over our plan together, I knew no matter what was ahead of us, I had the support and expert guidance I needed. I can’t tell you what a weight had been lifted off my shoulders in that moment, but if you could have someone with this kind of talent, experience and compassion working for you, wouldn’t you jump at the chance? Kennewick, now is your chance. Jump on it.

Melanie Kerr, Kennewick

Lemley listens, can change mind

For the past several months, I’ve been walking almost every day at Howard Amon Park, and I’d like to commend the City of Richland for the outstanding job they do with our parks. There is minimal litter and I’ve watched many people pick it up and put it in a trash can. I’ve done it myself as well. During the summer, it was great to see lots of activity in the park with all of the jet skis, kayaks and paddleboards. I especially enjoyed watching and hearing the little kids running around chasing each other and laughing. There’s nothing better.

Although Phil Lemley initially did not oppose selling all of the small parks in 2008, he told me that, if we wanted to save the one-acre Westwood Park, my neighbors and I should start mowing it ourselves even though it only takes city workers 20 minutes to do it. However, I also remember the Parks and Recreation meeting when Phil said, “Okay, that’s it! I don’t want to hear another word about selling the parks. The issue is closed.” Because Phil listened to the citizens of Richland and changed his mind I will likely always vote for him.

Jim Homan, Richland

Mastaler great for school board

Please join me in voting for Pat Mastaler for the Kennewick School Board Position 5. Pat joined the KSD Facilities Committee shortly after he moved to Kennewick over 15 years ago.

He has been an active part of this committee that has helped the KSD develop and revise the Ten-Year Facilities Plan to help assure that students in the district have facilities that support the educational objectives we all have for our children. He has also been active on the Citizens Levy and Bond Committee making the plans a reality.

Pat’s financial background and his work experience allow him a thorough understanding of KSD financial processes from the capital budgets for facilities to the operating budgets for staff and other expenses. His perspective is also broadened by his wife being an elementary school teacher and his role as a substitute teacher on his Fridays off from his job at Hanford.

Pat’s is also involved in a number of other community volunteer activities including Junior Achievement and Leadership TriCities. Ballots are now arriving in mailboxes. Please mark your ballot for Pat Mastaler for KSD Board Position 5.

John O. Perkins, Kennewick

Climate change now ubiquitous

Climate change has been in the news frequently this week, including the United Nations Climate Action Summit on Sept. 23.

Climate is not simply moving (some areas warming, some areas cooling); instead the planet is warming globally, and not insignificantly. The IPCC, composed of 195 governments and thousands of scientists, has come to the conclusion that this warming is due to mankind. The Sept. 12 issue of Time magazine, which is devoted to climate change, includes these facts: every continent has experienced a steady average temperature per decade increase over the last 40 years (pages 44, 52, 58, 74, 90, 94), glaciers are melting in Greenland, Montana, Alaska, the Andes, Antarctica, and on Mount Kilamanjaro (pages 47, 50, 75, 90), U.S. citizens have suffered increased coastal flooding in Virginia Beach and Florida (pages 60 and 61), and in Antarctica, ice is melting annually faster than it is re-freezing (page 91), leading to a global sea level rise (see also time.com/ 5669069/time-climate-change-issue/). Jonathan Overpeck summarizes things well in the Chicago Tribune, saying “Climate change is no longer just unequivocal, it is now ubiquitous.”

We should not deny, ignored or fear climate change; we must find solutions to mitigate it.

Matthew Monroe, Richland

Trump acts keep giving her chills

When I saw two official-looking Russians moseying around not just the White House, but the Oval Office with Donald Trump, looking happy as a lark, early in his administration, I felt a chill. Those little chills are more frequent and now, as he seems to put a financial cost on all his decisions, he withdraws our troops from Northern Syria to let our Turkish allies step up. Never mind it emboldens ISIS and Iran. His penny-pinching is going to kill people. His latest screed today is frightening. Where's Congress?

So far, Trump has given more aid and comfort to our adversaries than to our own country and our allies. Repeatedly I ask, "How did this happen?"

Lest we forget, Putin chose this leader for us. And he will again.

Elizabeth Koski, Richland